Revealed in concept form in 2007, the Up! is virtually identical to its progenitor - on the outside, at least. Where the concept packed its engine at the rear, in classic Volkswagen fashion, the production model sees the engine moved to the front.
The concept's drive wheels have also followed the engine, switching from a rear-wheel-drive layout to a front-wheel-drive arrangement in the transition from concept to production.
Power for the Up! is provided by a turbocharged and direct-injected 1.0 litre three-cylinder petrol engine, producing 44kW in standard form and 60kW in up-spec models - thanks to a little more boost pressure.
Fuel consumption, in standard form, is listed at 4.2 l/100km when paired with a five-speed manual transmission. A new six-speed clutchless auto will also be offered.
There is no diesel option, however Volkswagen has confirmed that it will offer an all-electric 'E-Up!' by late 2013.
The diminutive Up! measures 3.54 metres long and 1.64 metres wide, making it 380mm shorter than the Polo, but only 20mm narrower.
Rear storage is listed at 251 litres with the rear seats up, and an impressive 951 litres with the seats liad flat.
As a budget-focused volume seller, the Up!'s interior offers the bare safety and comfort essentials, and little more.
There's a neat little extra, however: Volkswagen's Maps + More system, which takes the form of a Portable Infotainment Device, which snaps into the dash above the centre console and stores navigation, telephone, information and entertainment data.
The Up! will hit the international market later this year, followed by a five-door version sometime in 2012.
Entering Volkswagen's European line-up beneath the already tiny Polo hatch, the Up! city car will take on the likes of the Toyota Aygo, the Fiat Panda, the Citroen C1, the Renault Twingo and the Peugeot 107.
As for Australia, Volkswagen is believed to be considering the Up! for a local launch if it is made available, with a price point in the neighbourhood of $15,000.